Thursday 14 August 2014

‘We will push for a law if we don’t get support'

This story didn't get much play in the mainstream media but it tells you everything you need to know about the public health racket, from the headline down.

‘We will push for a law if we don’t get support,’ warns health group

Yeah, that's the spirit. If people don't agree with you, force them.

Promoting products such [as] snacks, soft drinks and confectionery could soon become a thing of the past, according to leaked details from a Department of Health (DoH) meeting.

Susan Jebb, who chairs the food network of the DoH’s Public Health Responsibility Deal, warned at a meeting earlier this year that she will “go to ministers” if the industry is not quick to reduce the promotion of “products that people don’t need”.

What, I wonder, are these "products that people don't need"? I spend a lot of money on things that I don't need. They're the ones I like best. Thanks to the miracle of consumer capitalism I can buy lots of things that I don't "need" so why should the people who sell these wonderful products be prevented from promoting them? (Incidentally, if I was in such a perilous situation of near-starvation that I could only afford what I needed, I would be wise to spend my money on energy-dense food, but that's another matter).

Look, Britain wasn't designed for unelected cranks to decide what the public needs and ban everything else. A shop is the property of the shopkeeper and he'll lay it out any way he damn well pleases. If you find that intolerable, I suggest you move to a country that is more to your likely. Saudi Arabia, for example, or Cuba.

She warned that if suppliers and retailers didn’t take voluntary action, there would be mandatory action...

Ah, the famous "voluntary agreement" with government. Imagine mugging somebody with the words "If you don't give me your wallet voluntarily, I'll force you to give it to me". Do you this would be a legitimate defence if you were accused of robbery?

It would not. But when the government does it, it's okay. Threats with menaces are fine if you work for the state.

...on what she described as “an area that lends itself to legislation”.

I don't know Ms. Jebb personally but I doubt that there are many areas that she doesn't think "lend themselves to legislation". And yet, what democratic mandate does she, a "professor of Diet and Population Health", have to bring it about? Surely she is a mere hired hand, a sympathetic academic, not an elected politician?

Indeed she is, but she has been seconded to the Department of Health which, as we have seen, is run by ideological bureaucrats who effectively make laws under the shabby umbrella of 'public health'. So she probably has a good chance.

The move could force convenience stores to remove countertop units and obliterate the opportunity for impulse purchasing in smaller stores, costing retailers thousands of pounds.

A small price to pay to temporarily satiate the whims of Public Health. A step in the right direction if we are to give the people of England "not what they want but what they need" (as that terrible old puritan Oliver Cromwell put it). Put the tasty snacks behind shutters, put them in plain packaging! Won't somebody please, for God's sake, think of the children?

Oxford University professor Jebb is understood to be frustrated that, despite three years of group meetings, there has been no consistent progress towards removing promotions in shops, while reductions on salt and sugar have moved forward.

Despite all those meetings! The poor woman went all those meetings and the yet the government still hasn't banned chocolate advertising! It's a scandal, dear reader. What is the point of sending jumped up academics to meetings if the government doesn't bow down to them? It's so unfair! Clearly, this an "area for legislation".

Despite praising moves from Tesco and Lidl to remove confectionery from the till-point, she is keen for more action.

People like her are always keen for more action. The crusade of the curtain-twitching, chocolate-fearing busy-body never ends. There's no point trying to appease them. They think they know what people "need" and what they don't "need". Take away their state funding and throw them out on the street where they can return to their natural calling of howling at passers-by. Don't feather their nests. Burn their nests, smash their eggs, kick them out of public life. The lot of them.


Chris Oakley said...
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Chris Oakley said...
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Chris Oakley said...

Jebb was awarded an OBE in 2008. Martin McKee received a CBE in 2005 whereas Gerard Hastings had to wait until 2009 for his OBE. I am not party political but there is an historical reason why these people feel that they have a right to dictate. Of the three, Jebb is by far the most sensible and worthy, which is not saying a lot I admit. I agree with you on the funding. Excessive funding together with gutless appeasement and ignorance from all political parties are reasons why legislation has become the first rather than the last resort.

BrianB said...

Cromwell did have a good point when he said this, though:

“you have been sat too long here for any good you have been doing. Depart, I say, and let us have done with you. In the name of god, go!”

Yes, I know it was in a different context, but it is still an appropriate nessage to go out to the whole of our current political class, including those self-important bastards who masquerade under the egregious title of 'public health'.

Clear the town squares, and bring on the tumbrils, I say. Nothing like the odd beheading to return a little sanity to daily life - pour encourager les autres!

Junican said...

These people need big organisations to bash.
Simon Clark, a couple of days ago, talked about being contacted and asked for an opinion as to whether professional golfers were giving a bad example by smoking on the golf course. Simon told them that the players were individuals who had every right to decide for themselves.
It seems to me that this approach is probably the best way to deal with the Zealots most of the time. It is pointless arguing with them about 'the science'. All that matters is that individuals should not be used as cannon fodder by Public Health Zealots, in their attacks on big businesses.
Why should a parent not buy his/her child a bar of chocolate at the check out? What better place?

Unknown said...

You seem to have unintentionally added 'sym' in this sentence...

"...Surely she is a mere hired hand, a sympathetic academic, not an elected politician?..."

Good article again Chris.